Sofa cushion repair

When sofa cushions get old, it is cheaper to repair them than to have the entire cushion reupholstered. It is possible to clean dirty cushions, repair holes, replace flattened foam cushions, and repair sagging cushion covers without taking them to get professionally fixed.

Cleaning Dirty Cushions

Make sure to vacuum sofa cushions regularly to remove dirt.

Once in a while, sofa cushions also need to be cleaned with upholstery cleaner, like Woolite Heavy Traffic Carpet and Upholstery Cleaner. This cleaner is available at Ace Hardware and most other stores. Most upholstery cleaners are just sprayed on and rubbed into cushions with a rag until the cushions are clean. It is a good idea to do a test patch with any new cleaner to make sure that it does not warp the colour of the upholstery.

Repairing Sagging Sofa Cushion Covers

Sometimes, sofa cushion covers stretch out with age and start to look baggy. To fix this problem, unzip cushion covers and take them off of the cushions. With a sewing machine, sew along at least two adjacent side seams, slightly inward of where the original seams are. Be careful not to take them in too much, or they will be too small to fit back over the cushions. Sew along the new seams a second time with strong thread to make sure they do not come open when people sit on them. This is a very simple alteration, but it will make covers fit like new again.

Repairing Sofa Cushion Cover Holes

Sometimes sofa cushion covers get holes along the seams. These holes are fairly easy to fix. To fix them, unzip and remove cushion covers, and use a sewing machine to sew along the seam where the hole is. Make sure to use strong thread and at least two layers of stitches to make sure that the holes do not reopen.

Holes that are not on a seam are more difficult to repair. Small holes can be sewn back together by hand with thread that matches the upholstery colours. Larger holes may need to be patched. To patch a hole, find fabric that best matches the upholstery fabric. Remove cushion covers and place the fabric patch on the inside of the fabric over the hole. Patches can be sewn on with a sewing machine, but it will look best to sew them by hand with a blind stitch (very small stitches on the outside of the cushion).

Replacing or Repairing Flattened Foam Padding

Foam padding inside of sofa cushions can get flatted from years of weight pushing on them. If cushions have retained their shape but just need to be perked up a little, buy a thin foam mattress pad. is a good place to buy relatively inexpensive foam mattress pads. Cut the mattress pad into rectangles the size of the cushions, and put the rectangles inside of the cushion covers to add an extra layer of padding.

If cushions are misshaped and droopy in the centre, it may be necessary to get all new padding. This can be accomplished by taking out all of the old padding and using several layers of a foam mattress pad. If you do not want to cut and layer foam yourself, new custom-sized foam pads can be ordered from

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About the Author

Lisa Chinn developed her research skills while working at a research university library. She writes for numerous publications, specializing in gardening, home care, wellness, copywriting, style and travel. Chinn also designs marketing materials, holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology and is working toward a PhD in cognitive neuroscience.